Today Opportunity Ohio released a new transparency tool to help citizens hold their school districts accountable for spending choices.  This tool will be especially valuable to homeowners as they try to figure out how money proposed levies will cost them annually.  The tool also contains fiscal information for each district.  Please check out this groundbreaking tool here.

Below is the press release that Opportunity Ohio sent out earlier today:

Contact:  Mary McCleary, 614-636-2663

Opportunity Ohio Releases Groundbreaking Levy Calculator & School Data Tool To Supplement Release of 2013 K-12 Salary Data

Today Opportunity Ohio released an innovative levy calculator that allows Ohioans to calculate their estimated increase in property taxes should a levy pass in their district. To get their estimated property tax increases, users simply select their school districts, input their estimated home values, and the millage of the levies.

In conjunction with the estimated tax increase amount, each school district search returns easy to understand charts and other important fiscal data that will educate citizens on how their district manages taxpayer resources. The tool provides both an historical picture of fiscal management from 2001 to 2012 and future projections based on each district’s five-year forecast.

Matt Mayer, President of Opportunity Ohio, stated:  “For many Ohioans, property taxes take the biggest bite out of their paychecks. This fantastic tool significantly enhances their ability to get the facts on their district’s finances so they can make informed decisions on proposed tax hikes.”

In addition to the new levy tool, Opportunity Ohio released K-12 salary data for the 2012-2013 school year last Friday. Opportunity Ohio’s website contains teacher salary data as far back as 2004. With employee compensation swallowing most of school budgets, together the two tools provide taxpayers a comprehensive method to track school finances. Additionally, state worker salary data in Ohio is available from 2003 to 2012, as part of Opportunity Ohio’s government fiscal transparency project.

All data tools and other resources can be found at www.opportunityohio.org.